Arsenal 4-0 Standard Liege: 5 Talking Points and Tactical Analysis | Europa League 2019/20
The hosts dominated the early exchanges and were rewarded in the 13th minute when Gabriel Martinelli headed home a cross from the left flank. A few minutes later, the Brazilian completed his brace when he stroked the ball into the far corner.
In the 22nd minute, Joe Willock added another when he slotted the ball into the bottom corner.
Arsenal enjoyed a healthy 3-0 lead at the break and they gave a confident account of themselves after the restart. Their endeavours bore fruit when Dani Ceballos prodded in the Gunners’ fourth goal of the evening.
The home side had more chances to add to their tally yet, they failed to do so, meaning that their Belgian visitors were spared a humiliating score-line.
Here is a look at the talking points from the game:
#5 Arsenal tear Standard Liege to shreds in the first half
Arsenal named an experimental line-up for Standard Liege’s visit with most of the Gunners’ first-team being accorded a rest. The likes of Martinelli, Reiss Nelson and Willock started, hinting that the hosts were willing to test out their bench strength.
However, the combination of effervescent youngsters and fringe players conjured an irresistible opening 45 minutes, where they simply overwhelmed the visitors.
The home side started on the front foot and dominated possession from the outset, meaning that they put the Belgian side under the cosh early. Subsequently, the Gunners turned the screw methodically and blew Standard Liege away.
Martinelli popped up with a couple of tidy finishes while Willock displayed exemplary composure in the box to tuck his chance away. The latter, in particular, was a thorn in the Belgian side’s defence for a major part of the first half as his powerful running caused more than a furrowed brow or two.
Apart from the duo, Ceballos and Nelson looked bright as they kept presenting themselves in dangerous areas and always posed a new set of questions once the visitors had found answers to the ones asked previously.
The most astonishing aspect of Arsenal’s performance was that they could’ve amassed a couple of more goals had the rub of the green gone their way.
Before the game started, there were a few who felt that the game represented a potential banana skin for the Gunners, in light of the selections Emery made.
Yet, the players silenced those doubters rather emphatically as they effectively ended the game as a contest inside 21 minutes.